We always love to see how places change over time. Taking a look at older images next to current-day photos of famous landmarks really makes us feel like we have a time machine. Here are some astonishing “then” and “now” pictures of 11 historical places throughout the world.
1. Fremont Street, Las Vegas
Located in Downtown Las Vegas, Fremont Street is one of the most famous drives in the city. Today, it features the Fremont Street Experience, also known as “Glitter Gulch,” which is a barrel vault canopy that spans over four blocks of casinos.
2. St. Paul’s School, Darjeeling, India
St. Paul’s School was first established in 1823 to meet the needs of a growing British and Anglo-Indian community in Calcutta. This school for boys has often been referred to as the “Eton of the East.” Even today, the school is still home to over 750 students.
3. Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall
The atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, detonated at an altitude of approximately 600 meters, 160 meters southwest of what was once Hiroshima’s Industrial Promotion Hall. The bomb instantly killed everyone inside the building, but the structure itself wasn’t destroyed due to its stone and steel construction. Today, it is part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, and the structure itself was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996.
4. Machu Picchu, Peru
Machu Picchu was rediscovered by American archeologist Hiram Bingham in July of 1911. For hundreds of years before its rediscovery, Machu Picchu was a secret known and kept by the peasants living in the region. This Incan city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983, and has since been named as one of the New Seven Wonders of the World.
5. Cologne Cathedral, Germany
Cologne Cathedral, first built in 1298, amazingly survived all Allied bombardments during the Second World War. During the War, the Cathedral’s twin spires were a landmark to the Allies who were dropping bombs on the city. In total, the Cathedral was hit 14 times, and although heavily damaged, the structure remained intact. The Cologne Cathedral became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1996.
Stonehenge is one of the most famous prehistoric monuments in the world. No one knows for sure what the purpose of Stonehenge was, but it could have been a burial ground from its inception. Stonehenge has been a UNESCO world heritage site since 1986.
7. Mount Rushmore
Mount Rushmore features the faces of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln. Construction on the monument took place from 1927 to 1941. In 2021, 2,074,986 people visited Mount Rushmore.
8. Court of the Lions, Alhambra, Granada, Andalusia, Spain
The Court of the Lions is the main courtyard of the Palace of the Lions, located in the middle of the Alhambra palace and fortress. It was commissioned by the Nasrid sultan Muhammad V, and construction took place between 1362 and 1391. The site is now part of the UNESCO World Heritage List.
9. Manhattan Bridge, New York
The Manhattan Bridge is largely considered the predecessor of modern suspension bridges. Work on the bridge started in 1901, and was opened to traffic in December 1909. The bridge connects southeastern Manhattan with western Brooklyn.
10. Baker Street Station, London England
Baker Street Station was first opened in January of 1863, and is one of the oldest underground stations in the world. It is still a working subway station today.
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11. Reichstag Building, Berlin, Germany
The Reichstag building was first opened in Berlin in 1894, and housed the Imperial Diet of Germany until the end of the First World War. The Reichstag building was extremely damaged by a fire in 1933, and was further damaged during the Second World War. It wasn’t until 1990 that the building underwent a full reconstruction. Today, it is once again the meeting place of the German government.